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Doesn't want a long-distance relationship, then why does he call everyday? None
Old 08-25-2009, 11:57 AM   #1
jesster
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Background:
my INTJ romantic interest is in the army; we got to know each other when he was here on leave for a few weeks.

I'm quite sure he likes me. based on:
- he calls me everyday; he's been back on base for a month, and has called me everyday except maybe 4.
and these calls are costly; they're cellphone and each hour long call costs at least $3. and he usually has to go out and sit in his car to get good reception, or walk around the carpark / sit outside, and get bitten by mosquitoes.
- he always asks me about my day, several times each conversation and in detail. and when he was here, he did lots of little things to look after me, wanting to make me happy.
- he tells me regularly that he likes talking to me. and because he knows i want to hear it, tells me i'm pretty and that he had fun etc, even though it's completely unnatural to him (fairly standard INTJ, not into verbal affirmations).

Situation:
he's stated very clearly several times that he does not want a relationship while he's in the army (for the next 2 years). for several reasons:
- 3 month long deployments are fairly frequent, and he's seen too many friends come back home to find their girlfriends gone.
- he doesn't want his life to have nothing else besides work+girlfriend, he wants space for himself too.

anyway i respect this, and i hear him loud and clear. i accept that when an INTJ says these things, they're not playing games, they simply say how things are. so i'm not going to be so dumb as to fight it or hope he changes his mind.

Question:
but then, why does he keep calling me?

i have asked him how he felt about being in a relationship with me, but seeing as it's logistically impossible, he won't even play with the hypothetical. he said "i like you enough to go out with you". and when i asked him about what he wants from me, he said he hoped i wouldn't "dump" him when he was away, ie cease and block contact. and he wanted to hang out with me whenever he came back on leave.

and in the meantime, he says he wants me to date around, and he's happy to hear about my romantic escapades.

he does regularly make references to his future and intending on being married one day (no references to me). he often asks how my family/friends would accept my being with someone of his race (we're from different racial backgrounds), hypothetically.

This is the thing:
i've told him a few times that i really want a boyfriend, or at least to be free to look for one.
i then told him that as long as i keep talking to him like this, i can't do that.

i've told him this a few times already, in a few different ways; that these daily calls keep me emotionally involved, making it hard for me to pursue or seek other relationships. but it's possible that i was too subtle?
he didn't respond, and he keeps calling anyway (hey i do like talking to him though).

Help:
some insight please, what am i missing - what exactly is it that he wants from me?

does he just want me kept on a string, keep me warmed up for whenever he's back on leave?
or is he just so bored (his training's pretty boring these days), and likes talking to me anyway, so it's something to keep his days interesting?
or, is he still assessing me as a potential partner, for a time period 2 years from now when he's finished with the army? (this does actually fit in adequately with my own life plans)

any helpful input is appreciated
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Old 08-25-2009, 12:15 PM   #2
Seriously
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I'd say he enjoys talking to you, likes you but isn't in a position to commit to you. Seems like he has been fairly open about it.

I understand it's difficult to move forward with someone else when you are spending so much time talking with him. So you have to make a decision. Are you willing to put your life on hold in hopes that maybe things will work out with this man or do you want to cut ties with him and look for someone else.
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Old 08-25-2009, 12:34 PM   #3
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He's probably playing it safe. He doesn't seem like he's leading you on at all--it's more like he would like to have a relationship with you, but as Seriously said, isn't in a position for one. It also seems like he's contemplated dating you, but since the circumstances won't allow it, is blocking that idea for the time being. But he also cares enough about you to want you to be happy, with or without him, which is why he encourages you to date other people.
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Old 08-25-2009, 01:37 PM   #4
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I think he has given you the information you need in order to make your own educated decision. The ball is in your court- you can permit things to remain nebulous, or you can offer him the same hard data he's offered you.

You can tell him you are willing to stay "with" him, but that it needs to be with the understanding that this is a Relationship and that you are both investing in and committing to it as such- and that if he can't do that, if he believes this kind of relationship truly isn't possible or worth trying between you, then you do need to stop contact and move on.
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Old 08-25-2009, 02:42 PM   #5
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I think it could be one of a few possibilities. He could be setting this up very defensively so he won't feel rejected if the woman who wants a boyfriend doesn't turn out to really want him. If you want him, then make that crystal clear to him with no room for doubt (yes, that is putting yourself out there but why not?). Some INTJ males are just terrible with women. I remember a time when I needed to be very certain there would not be rejection. I got over that with age and the realization that I did have a lot to offer in a relationship, but I certainly missed out on a few women who inquired years later as to why I never asked them out after flirting with them.

He could find you irresistible but believe it really is bad timing. Another possibility is that he would love to have you as a friend but has no romantic/sexual interest in you. I don't think this is all that likely since he wants to hear about your adventures with other men. That leads us to him wanting you as an F_Buddy, which is actually the first thing that came to mind when I read your post. He has set it up so that he can, guilt free, pursue whatever women he wants when he is deployed. In fact, even when he is not deployed, you have no basis to expect him to be faithful to you. Wanting to hear about your other men makes me think that it is a turn on for him to think of you sexually. Usually if I want to hear much about you and your other men, it is because I want to know just how fun you might be in a casual relationship. After all, if you have recently slept with men without being in a committed relationship, then I know I can pursue a sexual relationship with you without the concern of having to commit to you.

Just be straight with him, very clear with what you want and the rules that apply. Somebody has to put himself or herself out there a bit to see where this is headed, and it doesn't sound like he will be the one doing that, so it is up to you. If he doesn't respond as you'd like, then move on.
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Old 08-25-2009, 04:14 PM   #6
karenann33
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I was all set with my answer till I got to this line.

 
and in the meantime, he says he wants me to date around, and he's happy to hear about my romantic escapades.

I think he probably does want some kind of a relationship but it's not possible given the circumstances so for now he will just take what he can get. He'd feel guilty for asking you to wait so he let you off the hook by saying go ahead and date.

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Old 08-25-2009, 06:22 PM   #7
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  Originally Posted by karenann33
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He'd feel guilty for asking you to wait so he let you off the hook by saying go ahead and date.

Maybe the OP did actually meet the rare man who is utterly selfless. If not, then I doubt he is so nice that he would feel guilty about asking her to wait for him when he is on deployment unless he knows he will be pursuing other women while on that deployment. It really isn't in most men's nature (including my nature) to so kindly let a woman off the hook if we are truly interested in her. If we do have a real interest in a relationship with her, most of us are way too selfish to encourage a woman to go date other men and then tell us about it.

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Old 08-25-2009, 07:21 PM   #8
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This sounds like escapism on his part. The telephone calls are an opportunity to escape into good conversation and forget about the routine of army life.

The only points that matter here are that he clearly said that he doesn't want a relationship in the next two years and that you said that while the calls continue you cannot pursue a relationship with someone else. If you want a relationship now then it seems you must say goodbye to this man.
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Old 08-25-2009, 09:20 PM   #9
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I think he likes you but realizes it won't work while he is abroad. I had a relationship with an older woman and I often told her it was fine if she found someone else eventually, we were about 10 years apart. She didn't want that though, she wanted either fun with no commitment whatsoever or total commitment. I guess these middle type of relationships don't fit well with other people? If it helps the logic is that you don't have to be lonely until you find someone. I guess its like having the cake and eating it too. I don't think he knew that you couldn't move on since he doesn't have that issue.
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Old 08-26-2009, 02:30 AM   #10
jesster
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ahhh..
Thank you all for your replies. It confirms my take on the situation..

My options are:

1. To continue enjoying this half relationship for the time being, while seeking a relationship elsewhere.
In some way, having this takes the pressure off other men I might pursue, as it provides companionship and affirmation (and sex, when he's in town) in some measure, therefore giving other fledgling relationships more breathing space and thus a better chance.
If it turns out not to work this way for me, then I will have to decide to cut him loose. (It will be a loss! It's hard finding an INTJ, an attractive one in the bargain)

2. Play the long game, ie. to do option 1 for the next 2 years. If I find someone else by then, fine; if I don't, then both him and I will be in a much better place in our lives to seriously consider a relationship with each other (eg. I'll be financially independent by then, I'll have lived more of the life I've wanted etc).
And if he's stuck around for that long, chances are he'll already have decided internally to commit to me, by then (that's my assessment of it anyway).

3. To try to get him to commit to a relationship with me within the next 2 years. This is playing in the back of my mind, though I realise it's naive / slim chances.

My question to you now is - does this seem possible? Seeing as he had previously resolved not to?
If so, I'd like to hear your thoughts on what will give this the best shot. How to get a reluctant INTJ to take the plunge, as it were.

My current approach is a low-pressure one (don't want to scare him off or force him to say another clear no), to continue spending time with him and allowing him to make his slow assessment of me, while making it clear that I like him and ultimately want a relationship with him, and occasionally challenging his notion that long distance relationships won't work.

Thanks again for your thoughts
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Old 08-26-2009, 09:40 AM   #11
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  Originally Posted by jesster
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My question to you now is - does this seem possible? Seeing as he had previously resolved not to?
If so, I'd like to hear your thoughts on what will give this the best shot. How to get a reluctant INTJ to take the plunge, as it were.

My current approach is a low-pressure one (don't want to scare him off or force him to say another clear no), to continue spending time with him and allowing him to make his slow assessment of me, while making it clear that I like him and ultimately want a relationship with him, and occasionally challenging his notion that long distance relationships won't work.

It has become apparent to me that INTJs appreciate stability and persistence. Assuming the attraction is mutual and you find this guy worth 2 years of you life that may potentially not work out anyways then go ahead. Personally I decline all advances from women knowing that I am a particularly difficult person to get along with. If I meet someone who despite my rejection still finds me interesting and wants to be around me then I may open up the tiniest bit. I could appreciate someone who gradually wears down my defenses; the fact that they maintained an interest long enough lets me know that it isn't a simple lustful attraction.

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Old 08-26-2009, 09:58 AM   #12
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  Originally Posted by jesster
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My options are:

1. To continue enjoying this half relationship for the time being, while seeking a relationship elsewhere.
In some way, having this takes the pressure off other men I might pursue, as it provides companionship and affirmation (and sex, when he's in town) in some measure, therefore giving other fledgling relationships more breathing space and thus a better chance.

No, it doesn't take the pressure off, it closes you off from new relationships and gives you an excuse. From reading your posts that sounds like what you want though, to imagine a relationship with this guy, rather than move on as friends or let him go.

 
2. Play the long game, ie. to do option 1 for the next 2 years. If I find someone else by then, fine; if I don't, then both him and I will be in a much better place in our lives to seriously consider a relationship with each other (eg. I'll be financially independent by then, I'll have lived more of the life I've wanted etc).
And if he's stuck around for that long, chances are he'll already have decided internally to commit to me, by then (that's my assessment of it anyway).

This isn't option 2, it's the same as option 1. That last sentence makes it sound like you would be happy with a relationship where he chooses you by default, don't you think you deserve to have someone want you, really want you more than anything? Enjoy the next two years of frustrating limbo.

 
3. To try to get him to commit to a relationship with me within the next 2 years. This is playing in the back of my mind, though I realise it's naive / slim chances.

My question to you now is - does this seem possible? Seeing as he had previously resolved not to?
If so, I'd like to hear your thoughts on what will give this the best shot. How to get a reluctant INTJ to take the plunge, as it were.

He already said no. He isn't willing to put his life on hold for the next two years, why are you?

 
My current approach is a low-pressure one (don't want to scare him off or force him to say another clear no), to continue spending time with him and allowing him to make his slow assessment of me, while making it clear that I like him and ultimately want a relationship with him, and occasionally challenging his notion that long distance relationships won't work.

Long distance relationships often fail even when both people are committed to working at them. He's said he doesn't want an LTR so why are you so determined to push the boulder uphill?

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Old 08-26-2009, 10:16 AM   #13
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I agree with Synamon.

He's not in a position to pursue a relationship with you and he's not likely to change that stance any time soon.

Your connection with him would prevent you from pursuing any others.

You have to choose and the choices are simple.

1. Keep this up for the next two years, then re-evaluate.

2. Let him go and move on.
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Old 08-26-2009, 12:10 PM   #14
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  Originally Posted by jesster
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Background:
my INTJ romantic interest is in the army; we got to know each other when he was here on leave for a few weeks.

I'm quite sure he likes me. based on:
- he calls me everyday; he's been back on base for a month, and has called me everyday except maybe 4.
and these calls are costly; they're cellphone and each hour long call costs at least $3. and he usually has to go out and sit in his car to get good reception, or walk around the carpark / sit outside, and get bitten by mosquitoes.
- he always asks me about my day, several times each conversation and in detail. and when he was here, he did lots of little things to look after me, wanting to make me happy.
- he tells me regularly that he likes talking to me. and because he knows i want to hear it, tells me i'm pretty and that he had fun etc, even though it's completely unnatural to him (fairly standard INTJ, not into verbal affirmations).

Situation:
he's stated very clearly several times that he does not want a relationship while he's in the army (for the next 2 years). for several reasons:
- 3 month long deployments are fairly frequent, and he's seen too many friends come back home to find their girlfriends gone.
- he doesn't want his life to have nothing else besides work+girlfriend, he wants space for himself too.

anyway i respect this, and i hear him loud and clear. i accept that when an INTJ says these things, they're not playing games, they simply say how things are. so i'm not going to be so dumb as to fight it or hope he changes his mind.

Question:
but then, why does he keep calling me?

i have asked him how he felt about being in a relationship with me, but seeing as it's logistically impossible, he won't even play with the hypothetical. he said "i like you enough to go out with you". and when i asked him about what he wants from me, he said he hoped i wouldn't "dump" him when he was away, ie cease and block contact. and he wanted to hang out with me whenever he came back on leave.

and in the meantime, he says he wants me to date around, and he's happy to hear about my romantic escapades.

he does regularly make references to his future and intending on being married one day (no references to me). he often asks how my family/friends would accept my being with someone of his race (we're from different racial backgrounds), hypothetically.

This is the thing:
i've told him a few times that i really want a boyfriend, or at least to be free to look for one.
i then told him that as long as i keep talking to him like this, i can't do that.

i've told him this a few times already, in a few different ways; that these daily calls keep me emotionally involved, making it hard for me to pursue or seek other relationships. but it's possible that i was too subtle?
he didn't respond, and he keeps calling anyway (hey i do like talking to him though).

Help:
some insight please, what am i missing - what exactly is it that he wants from me?

does he just want me kept on a string, keep me warmed up for whenever he's back on leave?
or is he just so bored (his training's pretty boring these days), and likes talking to me anyway, so it's something to keep his days interesting?
or, is he still assessing me as a potential partner, for a time period 2 years from now when he's finished with the army? (this does actually fit in adequately with my own life plans)

any helpful input is appreciated


Maybe he wants someone to get laid when he has his time off? Sorry, but it's what it seems to me.

He clearly stated that he doesn't want a commited relationship in the next 2 years, so why do you still wonder? It amazes me how men say exactly what they want and women don't listen.

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Old 08-26-2009, 01:17 PM   #15
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Ok, so on this forum, I've noticed a few things:

- Most INTJs will be reluctant to say another INTJ likes you or not. How can they say so? They don't know the person and even then, they don't know what that person is thinking.

- Most INTJs will always err on the side of caution and while they may acknowledge that the person is behaving in a way that suggests interest, they will always make sure to point out that it could be something done for platonic reasons or less than wholesome reasons.

- Most INTJs will say that their word should be taken at face value and ignoring their request is disrespectful. But then, I've noticed it's never been considered that perhaps the person could be lying, since quite a few INTJs have pointed out on here that when they like someone they try to hide it.

Anyway, with all that said. All I've found in my thread searching was 2 successful sounding relationships that seem similar to yours. The last one I included I think is a success story, but it doesn't seem to have started out in a similar manner. I included it because I think it also illustrates how much self-confidence and faith (in themselves, their intuition and the other person) a person must have if they decide to get involved in with an INTJ.

So yes, like Selfmadebum said you do have two options:

1. Stick it out and re-evaluate after two years (which will most likely be emotionally trying and there will be moments where you'll feel like you're being strung along and be so miserable...oh and it still might not work out)
2. Move on.

As someone who decided to just call it quits (and I think my reasons for it were sound), I don't know if I totally disagree with following option 1. But then, that's something I would've done if I had more confidence in a lot of things, not just his interest in me. Anyway, good luck with whatever you choose to do.
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Old 08-26-2009, 02:02 PM   #16
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Sounds like he likes you but doesn't like the pains of a relationship. You just have to realize that's all he's willing to offer, are you ok with that? If you can answer that you can figure out what to do next.
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Old 08-26-2009, 02:49 PM   #17
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  Originally Posted by SelfMadeBum
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2. Let him go and move on.

Though some may see this as game playing, an opportunity arises from letting him go. He'll get the chance to evaluate life without you. If he needs you then he'll pursue but, if he doesn't need you he will not. Either way, you'll be certain of your position when it's all over.

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Old 08-26-2009, 05:06 PM   #18
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  Originally Posted by ricearoni
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All I've found in my thread searching was 2 successful sounding relationships that seem similar to yours. The last one I included I think is a success story, but it doesn't seem to have started out in a similar manner. I included it because I think it also illustrates how much self-confidence and faith (in themselves, their intuition and the other person) a person must have if they decide to get involved in with an INTJ.

You missed a few. Last year SimplyOtter, curiousjane, green eyes, and lil all came to the forum with questions about an INTJs they were interested in who claimed he didn't want a relationship and after months and months those "relationships" went nowhere. I haven't bothered looking for any threads, but I remember all those off the top of my head since they are long term forum members and INFxs. I'm sure there are countless others who made only a few posts who didn't have a happy ending either.

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Old 08-26-2009, 08:20 PM   #19
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I agree with the INTJ army man that you're interested in. He doesn't know what's going happen and doesn't want to put you or he through obligations that can't be 100% commited to. The biggest issue is that something might happen to him, like death. Then there is the distance (and deployment which means less talking), and the chance you or he might find other interests. However, he's keeping in touch to keep his options open. That's all. Options open (because he likes you it sounds like).
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Old 08-26-2009, 11:17 PM   #20
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  Originally Posted by Synamon
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You missed a few. Last year SimplyOtter, curiousjane, green eyes, and lil all came to the forum with questions about an INTJs they were interested in who claimed he didn't want a relationship and after months and months those "relationships" went nowhere. I haven't bothered looking for any threads, but I remember all those off the top of my head since they are long term forum members and INFxs. I'm sure there are countless others who made only a few posts who didn't have a happy ending either.

I didn't list their particular threads because the situations weren't similar or because they didn't end up in a relationship with the wishy washy INTJ they were dealing with.

I picked those 2 particular posters because they clearly show how difficult it can be when dealing with someone that's so indecisive, how long it could take and how rare it is for it to end happily (that's why I have only 2 to list and not more*). Also, I think if someone is determined to give a relationship like that a shot, then it would be good to see how those who've succeeded, managed to do so and what difficulties to expect.


*Actually, there are a few other situations where NFs have managed to punch through that thick outer wall and reach the soft center of their INTJs. But they were involved with the INTJ before they joined the site so there isn't a thread following the progression from rejection to a relationship. i.e:


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& his INFP wife who chased him for 2 years.

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whose former INTJ b/f took 2.5 years to realize he loved her. (according to that thread they are no longer a couple, but considering how long they were together and how much he opened up to her, I view it as a success)

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, who also had to wait awhile for her INTJ to decide how he felt about her.

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Old 08-27-2009, 01:45 AM   #21
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It sounds like he's somewhat interested in you, but he isn't willing to commit or ask you to commit. I take the "happy to hear about your romantic" life as he wants to keep tabs on what you are doing, and he wants to be sure you are available to him when he needs you.

  Originally Posted by jesster
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anyway i respect this, and i hear him loud and clear. i accept that when an INTJ says these things, they're not playing games, they simply say how things are. so i'm not going to be so dumb as to fight it or hope he changes his mind.

This sounds very clear to me. I think you know where you stand with him - don't try to talk yourself out of it. How much do you really want to be with someone who is lukewarm on being with you? That seems to be the questions from my view. All the time that you are giving him, you could be putting into meeting someone who would really be invested in relationship with you without stringing you along for 2 years. How will you feel at the end of the 2 years if you aren't the one? And if he was really interested in ultimately marrying you, would he tell you the things he has said about not being willing to make a commitment of any sort?

  Originally Posted by jesster
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i've told him a few times that i really want a boyfriend, or at least to be free to look for one. i then told him that as long as i keep talking to him like this, i can't do that.

So why are you letting him string you along with the calls? You sound pretty clear about where you stand with him; how about telling him that until he's ready for a relationship, you need to be free spend you time with other people. He isn't going to turn down what you are offering (emotional support and whatnot). It's up to you to end the calls and free yourself to meet someone else. Good luck.

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Old 08-27-2009, 02:32 AM   #22
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I think he just wants somebody to talk to. He doesn't want to make some big commitment and then get cold feet and have the relationship between you two ruined. I do the same thing - by turning somebody down from trying to take it further, you avert disaster and don't lead anybody on!

This is a stretch, but what if he dies in the army and then you are crushed because you cannot marry him or have a future? Just one of the what if's my brain came up with. Or what if he is talking to other girls or has another girlfriend and doesn't want that to get sticky? Or maybe he thinks he's too unattractive or he'd get love shy so he's lying to hide his real feelings? I'm good at thinking ridiculous scenarios, but they could happen.

I think maybe you should try to control what you talk about so it's not so emotionally stimulating. Then maybe the calls won't be as bad.
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Old 08-28-2009, 11:00 AM   #23
SimplyOtter
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  Originally Posted by Synamon
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You missed a few. Last year SimplyOtter, curiousjane, green eyes, and lil all came to the forum with questions about an INTJs they were interested in who claimed he didn't want a relationship and after months and months those "relationships" went nowhere.

From my (very personal) experience. I think the worst "mistake" I made is related to the fact that the guy Synamon's referring to was probably the very first INT I had ever met in my life; I let his personality blow me away, without stopping and looking for the person behind it. This is, I think, also the difference between being infatuated and being in love.


Today, after more than one year, I can tell you that personalities are a huge factor in attraction, but what count the most in love is the person behind; this forum helped me greatly in acknowledging this difference, and I'm sure it will help you too. You got to look for the person behind.

A last thing. Since you are already talking with this guy every day, you already "have" a relationship, so don't let "labels" become too important; maybe exclusivity is the next step in relationships, I don't know for sure, but if it is, it's never the result of a "deal", IMO, but it should come as a natural choice, or, better, as something that you can't do differently... in any case, something related to a personal choice, for which each person takes individual responsibility.
In other words, I wouldn't be worried about his idea of an open relationship (cause this is what he's offering you) - you still have the freedom to be exclusive if you really want to- he just gives you the choice; the responsability of taking it or leaving it is yours. I would worry much more about that detail of him wanting to know all about your adventures, cause it's not a detail, and I DO feel bad telling you this, but this is what makes the whole difference in this story; cause an INTJ is always a man, before being an INTJ, and no man who really loves you could be happy to know those details. And no woman on earth, INFP or not INFP, can help but feeling hurt by a request like that. INFPs do have pride. Be strong.

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Old 08-28-2009, 12:12 PM   #24
Nikonman
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  Originally Posted by SimplyOtter
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I would worry much more about that detail of him wanting to know all about your adventures, cause it's not a detail, and I DO feel bad telling you this, but this is what makes the whole difference in this story; cause an INTJ is always a man, before being an INTJ, and no man who really loves you could be happy to know those details. And no woman on earth, INFP or not INFP, can help but feeling hurt by a request like that. INFPs do have pride. Be strong.

Exactly. If I were interested in a relationship with a woman beyond that of F**k Buddy, I'd never encourage such adventures by her, much less say she could share the details about them with me. About the last thing any man would want to hear from a woman he wants to be with is how John Doe showed her the time of her life last night. Heck, I did not like it the time a woman told me how uncomfortable sex was with her ex husband because he was so darn big! (And to the women reading this, we really don't need to know that kind of information; if you must tell us anything, then tell us your ex was completely inadequate in all ways when it comes to sex.)

If you want more than to be his friend with benefits, you will likely end up disappointed. He has set this up perfectly for such an arrangement, and you'd have no right to expect anything more than that based on what he as said.

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Old 08-28-2009, 12:31 PM   #25
larkin
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I think it's difficult for people to reconcile the idea of someone who clearly likes you - who's clearly interested in you - not wanting a relationship with you. But actually, it happens all the time. There are a million and one reasons someone might not want a relationship that have nothing to do with you - for example, being overseas on deployment for two years.

So the question isn't what he wants, it's what you want. Sometimes people hold on to non-relationships because there's no one more immediately interesting on the horizon, without realizing that holding on to it is a big part of preventing the other options. As Synamon said, it closes you off.

People will only move on when they're ready. Just be aware of the opportunity cost of continuing to have any expectations here, whether they're spoken or unspoken.
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